What Is Estate Planning?
Many people are yet to understand what estate planning really is. Some individuals believe that planning an estate is all about drafting a will, while other believe that estate plans should be made at an old age. The truth is that, estate planning is more than writing wills and waiting till you start growing grey hair before you plan your estate is a bad idea because you don’t know when you’ll die.
Estate planning are plans made by an estate owner regarding the management and distribution of his assets when he dies or become incapacitated. The plans may involve his burial arrangements when he dies. Also, for those who become incapacitated to make certain health and financial decisions, an estate plan can cover that.
By creating an estate plan, you are directly planning for your future, the future of your spouse, and those you love. Your family may end up suffering if you decide not to plan your estate while alive. Estate planning also offers you the opportunity to express your wish towards the distribution and the management of all that you own (your assets).
Why should you plan your Estate?
There are several reasons why you should plan your estate. An estate plan offers you the opportunity to dictate how you want your assets to be shared among your family and friends. If you fail to plan your estate and you die, your family, loved ones, and those you love will end up fighting for what they feel they are entitled to. This could get messy and it could end up damaging several relationship. I am quite sure this is something you wouldn’t want to happen.
If you die without planning your estate, who will inherit the things you own? Well, your assets wouldn’t lie fallow when you die without planning your estate, neither will it be shared or managed as you want it to be ( remember you didn’t plan your estate), rather , all that you left behind will be shared and managed based on the intestate law of the state you reside in. This process can be messy, it is often time-consuming, stressful and very expensive as lots of court payments are made and those you left behind will also have to hire a good lawyer to represent them in court.
A will is a very common term. We often hear the word “will”, but do you really know what a will is? Well, a will is a legal document that contains some important information regarding your asset. In a will, you have to state the name of your estate executor, your assets and who you want to inherit it, including how you wish to be buried.
Your asset will be distributed based on your will but before this happens, the validity of the will needs to be determined via the probate process.
The probate process can be difficult and stressful which is why a wise probate lawyer will advise that you plan an estate that avoids this tedious process. After your demise, your assets can’t be sold nor distributed until after the probate process. This process is done for several reasons, one of which is to determine the authenticity of your will.
The probate process is also done to appraise your properties, settle all due taxes and unpaid debts, locate all your assets home and abroad, etc. Normally, the probate process can take as long as a few months to a year. If there exist some complications with your estate, the process can take years.
You can avoid the probate process by creating a trust. A trust is simply a legal media created by an estate owner and used to transfer assets to a trustee who then keeps them in a trust fund for a third party who is regarded as a beneficiary.
Probate Attorney New York
If you reside in New York and you need the assistance of a probate attorney to either assist with your estate plan or probate process, you can contact us. We have the best probate attorneys and they are capable of providing you with the best help and advice you need.